German market research group GfK believes that smartphone sale revenues for Q4 of 2015 have dropped at annual rate of 0.2 percent to $115.2 billion. That said, a record 368 million phones were sold, up 6 percent from the year before. In particular, India saw a 34 percent jump in sales that were driven by sub-$100 phones. Sales slumped in North America.
So, why the budget chic these days? Kevin Walsh, direct of trends and forecasting, says it has nothing to do with what manufacturers can control:
Local factors, rather than regional and industry trends, are increasingly driving markets. Diverging economic trends, device saturation, mass market adoption, politics, social change and even sport have an impact on smartphone demand and prices at country level.
How will brands adjust? Apple is introducing a new four-inch phone expected to settle below the $500 level while still selling the iPhone 5s at a heavily-reduced price. LG has been wielding the knife across all of its devices. Windows 10 Mobile? Still cheap cheap cheap for the most part.